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Monday, September 30, 2013

The Design Decisions That Matter

When the people are considered market share we have lost touch with humanity. When price becomes a question of what they will bear we have lost touch with value. When the land becomes a commodity we have lost touch with our source of life. When the atmosphere, rivers, and oceans become a dump we have lost our senses. When we believe winning is the only thing we have lost. 

An economy reflects the decisions of a nation the way architecture reflects its level of awareness. The architecture of cities is telling us that we face sprawl, over-development, environmental ignorance, and blight. When the message is ignored we have lost touch with the decisions that matter on a planet that does not compromise. We all must adjust to a new level of awareness before it will be reflected in the architecture and economy of nations. 

The Republic 

The republic is lost in a blizzard of issues sponsored by an increasing diversity of opinion that cannot agree on common goals. This is a breeding ground for those who divide to conquer and stalk the people looking for signs of weakness.  

When threatened from within the people remain somewhat complacent. They have been deceived and defrauded on numerous occasions. In fact, they are beginning to lose faith in the intent of the republic - and that leads to Imperial Rome. 

We will remain strong as long as the people continue to believe the promise, but trust is easily broken by the repetition of duplicity and deceit. The economy is only the most recent example.  

The lesson from Rome is that a nation’s goals must deserve the people’s trust or it ceases to exist. Individual wealth is no substitute. It is a threat that leads to monarchy of the affluent until the protection of excess can no longer be purchased. 

Predators cannot live without a healthy population in the Natural Domain but their symbiotic existence has been a gift. We must learn from the gift that has been given. This is the challenge since we are all parasites who must create a new way of life or follow in the footsteps of those unable to imagine the consequences of ignoring the gift we have been given. 

The goal is survival with dignity. Democracy and free enterprise are simply a new format for debate based on a vanished Greek ideal that respected the people. It has encouraged a blizzard of issues that distract us from the goal. For instance, we debate the sanctity of life but what good is saving the life of an individual when you can’t save a population from polluting and consuming the planet? What good is free enterprise that is free to ignore the physical and social consequences of its decisions? When the concept of freedom threatens the goal of survival with dignity we need to protect the people. 

I challenge you to think about the goals that matter. Issues are simply objectives without a strategy or a goal. It’s like giving Patton the freedom to assault any objective on the plain. He wouldn’t know where he was going or what he was achieving but he would do a fine job of winning each melee.

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